Now three years or so ago now, I received an interesting proposal from Stephen Hurley. He was starting a radio station and was inviting me to broadcast This Week in Ontario Edublogs on the station. Until that time, it was just a regular Friday morning blog post.
This seemed kind of interesting; I know that Stephen is from the GTA so I started to think about great Toronto radio stations – CFTR, CHUM, CFRB, CHFI, CHIN, Q107, and more. Would it be possible for him to fit in there?
Of course, Stephen’s vision didn’t involve an antenna on the CN Tower. In the tradition of Radio ds106, this was going to be internet radio. Visit the right website, turn on your media player and away you go. People would upload podcasts and Stephen would play them. Now, podcasting wasn’t new to me; I’d done them years ago as part of the Computers in Education Portal on the school district website. This vision had the potential to be something bigger and with a larger potential audience.
His proposal went a bit further; instead of uploading the show strictly as a podcast, we would do it live and also record it for playback. And we were off. The first shows were short and very amateurish on my end. Stephen does have a great radio voice and presence and really carried the show. I like to think it’s got better over the years.
In fact, this whole dream of Stephen’s to have a radio station devoted to education continues to get better and better.
So good, in fact, when Diana Maliszewski suggested that Stephen’s baby be nominated for an OLA Award, it only made sense. Over the years, teacher-librarians and support for their role in education had assumed a significant support on the various shows broadcast on voicEd radio.
Diana let those of us who had supported the nomination know this past weekend that the OLA did want to honour Stephen and voicEd Radio this year with the Ontario Library Association Media and Communications Award.
The OLA Media and Communications Award was established to reward
individuals and companies that present libraries and librarians in a constructive light, breaking down stereotypical images often associated with the profession. To qualify, the coverage must appear in Canadian magazines, newspapers or journals, be heard on Canadian radio stations, be viewed on Canadian television, or be on Canadian web sites. Any OLA member may suggest a candidate for the award. The final decision rests with the OLA Board of Directors.
Past winners are listed here.
There are, in fact, a few traditional radio stations that have been recognised in the past on that list. voicEd Radio fits in nicely.
The only remaining detail was how to let Stephen know that he would be recognised this year. Doing it live on This Week in Ontario Edublogs seemed like a natural and it was done this Wednesday morning. You can listen to it from the archive here.
Over the years, Stephen has used his platform to enable various voices in education. His slogan is “Your voice is right here”. It only seemed logical to let Stephen’s voice accept the nomination live and hopefully with a little surprise.
He let the world know a little later in the day on Twitter.
voicEd radio has indeed given many educators a spot for their voice and it’s growing. The current lineup can be found here.
I’m so happy with the Ontario Library Association’s decision to recognise Stephen this year. It is a worthy recognition for a current, living, evolving innovation in education.